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Commonly Misconstrued Intent of the Constitution

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posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 11:31 PM
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In thread after thread, I'm seeing that people aren't really understanding the intent of our Constitution, particularly the first 10 Amendments, better known as the "Bill of Rights". Many people like to cite the Constitution as giving us the right to free speech, bear arms, secure privacy or choose religion and this just isn't the case at all. Instead, the Bill of Rights only protects those liberties from government infringement.

People seem to be confusing the Bill of Rights as giving us our liberties but that was not the intent and such a notion is wholly inaccurate. The government is not supposed to provide us with our rights, rather we were born with those rights and the Constitution prevents government from impeding on them. It's not so much about what you can do, as it is about what government can't do. The Bill of Rights doesn't give you your rights so much as it prevents the government from taking those rights away. There is a critical difference between the two.

For instance, the 1st Amendment doesn't give you the right to free speech, religion or the ability to assemble. Rather, the 1st Amendment prevents government from impeding on your right to free speech, ability to assemble or choose which ever religion peaks your interests, if any at all.

The same could be said about all of the other rights mentioned in the Constitution. God (whoever or whatever you believe him to be) gave you those rights and the Constitution prevents the government from taking them away. Again, it's not about what you can do, so much as it's about what the government can't do.

Why is this important? Because by implying that the government provides these rights for us, we are giving government far more power than they should have. If the government can give these rights to us, then the government can also take these rights away, philosophically speaking.

Another consequence of misinterpreting the intent of the Constitution, particularly the "Bill of Rights", is that people expect the Constitution to protect their rights in matters which don't concern government at all, such is often the case on this board. For instance, the 1st Amendment doesn't really matter much in cases that don't concern the government, such as the freedom of speech on this board. I have seen quite often where people cite the 1st Amendment to complain about their posts edited, censored or closed.

Other cases that I have seen on ATS to where people wrongly cite the Constitution, is in political matters where they use the Constitution or Amendments therein as a basis for their argument against or for a political principal or opinion. For instance, in one thread, someone had asked where in the Constitution does it say that homosexuals can marry. Remember, the Constitution doesn't afford us our rights so much as it prevents the government from impeding them. This is just one instance out of many. Another instance was on the thread about the "ground zero mosque", where people keep claiming that they have the 1st Amendment right to freedom of religion. While I have nothing against the mosque, the 1st Amendment doesn't really have anything to do with it, unless the federal government is trying to prevent it from being.

It would seem that on almost every other political thread, people are wrongly citing the Constitution. They are giving the government far more power than it does and should have. This understanding of the Constitution is also inaccurate and after all, isn't it our goal to deny ignorance?

--airspoon





[edit on 14-8-2010 by airspoon]




posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 11:46 PM
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reply to post by airspoon
 


so our rights were given to us by our creator the constitution just guarantees protection from the federal government?



is that the right take on this?


im asking because there is so much that has been thrown left and right its hard to make out what to believe anymore.

[edit on 13-8-2010 by neo96]



posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 11:49 PM
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Originally posted by neo96
reply to post by airspoon
 


so our rights were given to us by our creator the constitution just guarantees protection from the federal government?



is that the right take on this?

Given to us by our creator or inborn simply because we are human beings, yes. Every human being has these right by birth. The constitution draws the line in the sand between us and the government.



posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 11:52 PM
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reply to post by eNumbra
 


protection from the government but what protects us from each other?



posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 11:55 PM
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reply to post by neo96
 


The Constitution doesn't protect us from each other, other than by giving government the ability to legislate and enforce laws.

--airspoon



posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 11:55 PM
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reply to post by airspoon
 


I think 'ole George had the right idea of rights. If we are free we should have no rights.




posted on Aug, 13 2010 @ 11:56 PM
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Originally posted by neo96
reply to post by eNumbra
 


protection from the government but what protects us from each other?

Anyone who truly understands and respects these rights would not be infringing upon them. Those who don't are subject to us defending ourselves or an authority appointed by us defending us, but mostly we do. It is the prerogative of the individual aware of his rights to defend them when infringed upon.



posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 12:04 AM
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IMHO
We need some government to deal with group concerns..
but Tyranny is the natural end result of government.

The constitution and the bill of rights are ment to balance the needs of the many against the needs of the few.

"A republic if you can keep it."- Ben Franklin
This is why in the interests of tyranny, the constitution and the bill of rights are being dismantled.

"Just a g d piece of paper."- George W Bush..
( Close relative of the queen of England, who's grandfather helped fund Hitler.)

FandS

[edit on 14-8-2010 by Danbones]

[edit on 14-8-2010 by Danbones]



posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 12:18 AM
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reply to post by airspoon
 


i think your spot on with this thread
no court in the land has the right to remove god given rights
the documents are kept alive in the way they are taught to the youth
they can not be dismantled without the people thinking it is possable to do so

it is every persons job to defend the constitution and to teach it
for it is the basis of the only true free country of the world
the experiment in freedom called america can be a model for the world

xploder



posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 12:26 AM
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Originally posted by ExPostFacto
reply to post by airspoon
 


I think 'ole George had the right idea of rights. If we are free we should have no rights.



I love how Carlin starts out, he suckers in the libs then comes down with the hammer.

Carlin is an absolutely fantastic political comedian.



posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 10:35 AM
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Spot On! I think you put it very well.

I think one of the "successes" of the politicians over the past few decades has been to get everyone to believe they are somehow "under" or "subject to" the government.

Here is how my family looks at it... We have every right to do anything we want to do at any time we want to do it. We do not recognize any limitations on our freedoms. We do understand, though, that there are consequences to our actions. The constitution is supposed to prevent the government from creating the wrong set of consequences for the stuff that the founders considered the most important.



posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 10:57 AM
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Originally posted by airspoon

God (whoever or whatever you believe him to be) gave you those rights and the Constitution prevents the government from taking them away.



This is why TPTB's #1 objective is destroying God in the minds of the people.

If there is no God, we have no God given rights.

Go upstream thread far enough and you'll always find the truth.



posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 11:46 AM
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I agree totally with your excellent, clear and concise summation of the purpose of the Constition. And if we look at the period in which it was drafted we can understand why they rebelled against King George i.e. fleeing religious persecution in the mother country, being overtaxed without representation, stationing of a standing army in the colonies, forbidding their own money, etc. The reasons parallel our own times as the British government was overstretching the mark and trampling on their God-given liberties. A few quotes bear this out. For instance, Jefferson said, "In questions of power, then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief with the chains of the Constitution." James Wilson, one of the first justices of the Supreme Court, said: "Liberty and security depend not on the limits, which the rulers may please to assign to the exercise of their own powers, but on the boundaries within which their powers are circumscribed by the Constitution" or as Ron Paul recently said, "The Constitution was written to constrain government, it's now used to constrain the people."

[edit on 14-8-2010 by cameraobscura]

[edit on 14-8-2010 by cameraobscura]



posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 11:47 AM
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reply to post by zroth
 


God doesn't have to mean some entity in white robes sitting on a cloud somewhere. I do see your point, however we were all born with our rights. Not one single person was pooped out of his/her mother with a certificate saying they have authority of any other. Authority should always be held by the people and delegated as they see fit. The US government is supposed to have been established for just that and the wording of our Constitution is riddled with that intent.

--airspoon



posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 01:12 PM
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EXCELLENT POST!
I'm saddened every time I hear- 'we're guaranteed that right under the Constitution' .
People who argue against the use of the word 'god' know not what they speak.

I blame it all on the public school system.

[edit on 14-8-2010 by Dornberger]



posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 02:20 PM
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Originally posted by neo96
reply to post by eNumbra
 


protection from the government but what protects us from each other?


Brains,brawn and Smith & Wesson !
second line



posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 03:02 PM
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no such things as rights u break a law #in uncle sam takes your "rights" away ill give one example person a kills person b person a goes to jail court etc. get sentenced to death or twenty five to life with or without the chance of parole (any felony and the second amendment is taken away) lets say person a gets the death penalty well along comes person c (the executioner warden or who ever it is) executes person a and gets to go home even tho he just killed a guy he still has all his "rights" now days we have priveleges which is another thing used as leverage to control a population pretty much a modern day roman empire



posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 03:18 PM
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reply to post by zroth
 


They aren't "God-given" rights. They are inalienable rights. Being that Freedom of Religion is one of those inalienable rights, we have the natural right to believe or not believe in a god or supreme being or anything in-between.

Taking away "God" doesn't do anything to your natural rights.



posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 03:19 PM
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reply to post by airspoon
 


Thank you for this, airspoon.

The Constitution was only intended to force the Government to recognize our Creator-bestowed rights.

There is no such thing as a Constitutional right.


The Constitution is a Trust Indenture



...The Constitution does not control either the people or their rights; rather it formed our Constitutional Republic government. Thus, it is designed to create and control the government not the people. Accordingly, it is not the source of the people's rights; People’s rights come from their creation under God. Rather, it is the source of the government’s privilege to govern. Thus, there is no such thing as a Constitutional Right.


teamlawproductions.com...

Cheers

[edit on 14-8-2010 by FewWorldOrder]

[edit on 14-8-2010 by FewWorldOrder]



posted on Aug, 14 2010 @ 03:29 PM
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off-topic post removed to prevent thread-drift


 



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